Comprised of a trio of siblings and an honorary inductee into their sisterhood, TEEN are a band whose familial bonds have translated into a deep-seated musical chemistry. Their sisterly synergy has never been more audible however than on ‘Love Yes’, the record in which they polish off their art rock edges and instead take synchronised steps in a streamlined pop direction that boasts spectacular results.
Whereas 2014’s ‘The Way and Colour’ emanated reservation with its collected lo-fi-meets-R&B vibes, ‘Love Yes’ whirrs to life in a more gung-ho and instantaneous fashion - parading glitzy analogue synths and vocal cadences like twirling batons from the opening bars of album opener ‘Tokyo’. From there on out, TEEN toy and experiment with pop’s maximalist nature to their heart’s content - reaching peak sensationalism in the towering power balladry of ‘Another Man’s Woman’ whilst strewing together synth oddities and airtight choral harmonies on the steady moving album highlight ‘Animal’.
Although ‘Love Yes’ is predominantly packed with songs that might prompt the listener to throw the meanest of hand jives, it does not come without its moments of fragility. ‘Please’ - a soul-baring slow burner centred around Lieberson sister Lizzie’s relationship with her late father – brings to the surface a raw human element which sometimes gets masked amidst all the record’s flashiness, with the vocalist tenderly poising questions such as “what kinda woman did you think that I could be?” in a manner that elevates emotional transparency beyond musical flair for a few magical fleeting moments.
Come the curtain call closer of ‘Push’, it’s evident to see ‘Love Yes’ serves as the most iridescent article of TEEN’s discography – a crowning jewel that’s wildly flamboyant on first impression yet deeply personal upon closer inspection.